( dpa ) - The rights of the world's 650 million people with disabilities will be protected by a convention that enters into force next month after Ecuador became the 20th country to have ratified it, it was announced Thursday.
The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and its protocol will take effect May 3, one month after the 20th ratification was made.
"It is a historic moment in our quests for realization of the universal human rights for all persons, creating a fully inclusive society for all," said UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.
Ban said the convention will be a "powerful tool" to remove obstacles faced by disabled people, which range from discrimination and segregation from society to economic marginalization.
The UN said 80 per cent of the 650 million disabled people live in the world's less developed nations.